46/46 of the daily Lenten blog… The last one! (?)
When you live in a remote place like the jungle, there is the potential for boredom to occur in your down time (which isn’t much, since we’re all down at the hospital A LOT). It can start to look a little like the movie ‘Groundhogs day.’ Don’t get me wrong, there is serenity to be found sitting outside in the evening, listening to jungle sounds, and watching birds and bugs. We have a bi-weekly game of ultimate frisbee. We have a Praise and Worship night each week. But by and large, one week looks a lot like the next.
But I used a word that I just can’t abide. ‘Boredom’ My kids know this to be a trigger word, which, when used by them, elicits a fixed-action response from Heidi and I that sounds a lot like a long lecture on how you can only be bored if you choose to be.
So then I decided to assess the situation, to see if it was accurate to say that a person could be bored here, on the North coast of Honduras, serving God. From a service stand-point, this is definitely NOT a boring place. There is enough excitement at the hospital to keep us occupied 24/7. We live with the threat of a medical emergency at any moment, day and night, which will require our immediate attention. And we see such a vast and fascinating array of medical pathology to keep us challenged beyond our abilities.
In regards to our ‘down time’ being ‘boring’, I came up with 4 categories that I believe refute this assertion. (inspired by a blog post written by Anne Hotz, one of the other long term docs down here. (click here to see her post). It was a post which I read even before we arrived).
- THINGS WE’VE DONE: -Killed venomous snakes. Scuba dived. Held a tarantula. Drank unknown liquids from a plastic bag sold off the side of the road. Learned to speak Spanish. Eaten shark. Jumped from countless cliffs into rivers below. Spearfished. Been the only white kid at school. Seen the Panama Canal. Gone to a Honduran wedding and funeral. Wielded a Machete. Found lice in our hair (Ryan excluded, see Hair Fairies). Been broken down on the side of a dusty road. Sweat our asses off (no really, they fell off). Put our lives in the hands of partially insane Honduran drivers. Tolerated countless power outages. Served God to the best of our abilities.
- THINGS WE THOUGHT WE’D NEVER DO: -Become friends with a monkey (BTW, sweet Jack the monkey was killed. We are very sad). Meet the president of Honduras. Swim with Barracudas. Play hide and seek in the Jungle. Ride a motorcycle on a daily basis. Break our noses (Ryan and Juliet). Facilitate a Tsunami warning evacuation. Get caught in an Anti-government riot/road block. Work in the metal shop (Owen). Play the Mandolin (Will). Tackle an Insane man. Home school our kids. Live in Honduras for over 3 years… Care for gunshot wounds on an Assassin. Get stung by a scorpion while asleep in Bed. Take shopping trips to San Pedro Sula (murder capitol of the world) for fun. Write a daily Lenten blog. Come to love all the people we work with, the community we serve, and the country of Honduras.
- THINGS WE’RE STILL CONSIDERING DOING: -Tromping into the the deep jungle in search of hidden drug trafficking headquarters. Taking a canoe trip off one of the islands (and never coming back…) Cage fighting. Eating hallucinogenic mushrooms. Drinking from the river. Flushing the toilet paper down the toilet. Going gluten free. Joining a Reggae band (and growing dreadlocks–Ryan only). Riding the chicken bus into town. Staying longer.
- THINGS WE WISHED WE HADN’T DONE: Delivered several babies in flip flops. Fished poo out of a plugged toilet. Taken a giant Iguana for a ride in the back of my friends vehicle.
As we look back on this adventure that has been our lives here at Loma de Luz, in the Jungles of Honduras, it’s hard to imagine how we got here. I think it boiled down to feeling God move us to do something, and then getting into a boat that we weren’t sure would float. Once we got in the boat, we found that it took us to places we never imagined.
When we left our home in Washington State, our theme song was Toby Mac’s ‘Beyond Me,’ and we still find it to be relevant after three and a half years:
I’m leaving the sweet spot sure shot tradin’ it all for the plans you got
Is it so crazy to believe
That you gave me the stars put them out of my reach
Call me to waters a little to deep
Oh I’ve never been so aware of my need
You keep on making me see
It’s way beyond me
On the Eve of Easter, as you look at the big picture, ask yourself if you have trusted and Believed.
If not, I urge you to roll the stone away. Behold the empty tomb. Then consider the cost of losing your life to gain it. You only have to give up everything, but you will seize hold of THE ONE THING.
Photos of the Day:
Yesterday, we visited the Garifuna village of Rio Esteban, to share in the festivities of Semana Santa. People danced and enjoyed the Caribbean-flavored music, ate various barbecued offerings, and swam in the sea.
That’s 46/46 baby, take it off the grill, cuz it’s DONE!